James Parrish


06 Jan James Parrish

Job title: Personal Assistant
Type of position: Placement
Corporate Relations @ Brunel University
Degree: Business and Management (Marketing)
Year of Graduation: 2014 

Why I loved it:

“Variety! I was doing something completely different every day, whether it was networking with business partners, designing posters, sending out e-newsletters to thousands of recipients or setting up meetings with CEO’s. The nature of the job and department was very engaging and I was never left with nothing to do.”

My best experience/greatest achievement:

“Near the start of my placement we held two high profile events on the same day. First it was a business focused event, attended by CEO’s of hundreds of West London companies, and then it was a launch of Brunel’s new comedy centre event, where Jo Brand and Lee Mac among other comedians spoke and performed. This was my first experience of running high profile events and it was very rewarding seeing it through, especially managing the logistics of running back to back events, and meeting Lee Mac wasn’t bad either!”

What I learned:

“I have really developed my skills across all functions, through training but mostly experience I established new talents in networking and communication, computer skills for both admin and accounting, and in creative tasks, such as e-marketing and design. Things that were alien to me such as events management became a core activity of my day-to-day role. On-top of all of these new technical skills, what emerged the most were skills that are transferrable to almost any task in life; I developed a new found work ethic and organisational skills that allow me to use my time better and to work more efficiently.”

About my experience/Tips for students:

“There was never a dull moment in my time working in Corporate Relations, with a small team of just three people; I was instantly given a lot of responsibility and sense of importance. The PA title was only the beginning of what the role entailed, though the organisational development and confidence that being an assistant has given me is invaluable. Because of the amount of events our department ran, along with the regular email correspondence; there were lots of opportunities to engage and network with senior management in companies of all different variety, from start-ups to Asda, which allowed me to build strong connections with potential future employers. There was freedom in the position in which I was encouraged to use my strengths to improve the department and make an impact in my time there. What I have learnt and experienced has given a true insight in which functions I enjoy and would like to pursue as a career.”